One of the most common reasons that a person fails at a given workout program is that we tend to place more emphasis on the physical aspect of health and fitness, at the expense of the mental aspect.
Fitness programs are physical by nature, and in general are physically demanding, this is a self-evident and obvious statement. However, in my experience the major reason a workout program fails is the mental stress and fatigue that it entails.
Let’s face it, most among us do not relish the idea of waking up early to haul ourselves to a gym (be it down the road or in our basements) and spend several hours of our week sweating and cursing at kettle bells and free weights.
Although initiated with the most noble of intentions, workout programs inevitably lead to a crisis point at which the individual is torn between two potentialities; success and failure. Failure begins with excuses (I am too tired, I do not have the time, I missed one workout so I cannot keep up with my workout schedule etc.). Do these sound familiar? Here are a few tips to prevent these excuses from leading you down a road to failure in your fitness journey.
TIP #1 – Take a weekly approach
Maybe you had to work late today, maybe the kids had a soccer practice tonight, or perhaps you were just feeling lousy today. You are going to miss workouts on any given day during your fitness journey, it is inevitable. Everyone is entitled to have a bad day, however the challenge is to not ruin an entire week because of one bad day. Instead, take a weekly approach to your assessment of your success. This includes only taking measurements (weight, inches lost etc.) once per week rather than every day. Monitoring on a weekly basis will enable you to take a more complete picture of your relative success, and allow you to tweak your program accordingly.
TIP #2 – Make a Calendar
Do yourself a huge favour and pick up a large calendar from your local office supply store. Post the calendar either wherever in your house you do your workouts, or beside your bed if you work out at a gym. At the start of each month, use a black permanent marker and jot down which workouts you are going to do on each day of the upcoming month. Whenever you complete a workout for one particular day, cross out that day on the calendar with a green marker. If you fail to complete your daily workout, cross out that day with a red marker. Your challenge is to ensure that at least 60% of the month contains green marker days.
Employing a calendar is a powerful tool to track your progress. One aspect of the calendar is that you can tailor the workout to the demands of a particular day. For example, I work out at night and I know that I tend to work later on a Thursday as opposed to other days, thus I know to schedule a workout that takes less time and is less stressful on my body. By scheduling a more manageable and “easy” workout I can ensure that I will not get home and find an excuse not to do the workout, which is a simple trick that has led to lasting success.
In the future we will be posting more tips and advice on this website, we hope that you will use them to find success in your own health and fitness goals.